Rough Into Smooth
Beloved Saints of God
An artist can take a piece of .50 cent paper and make it worth thousands of dollars. A painter can take a piece of $10.00 canvas and make it worth millions. A mechanic can take a piece of scrap material worth $50.00 and make it worth $500.00. Jesus Christ can take a worthless, sinful person and make him or her a sanctified soul! I didn’t come up with this; I saw it somewhere.
Look around today. Pick up a local newspaper. Pick up a magazine. Turn on the T.V. Turn on the radio. Turn on your cellular phone. Visit the internet. And what to do you see? You will find that we are bombarded with images, stories, quotes etc of so-called celebrities. Society today is so caught up in celebrity-ism and we (i.e. Christians) keep adding their voices to what non-Christians keep saying of such people, “Oh, if he/she could use their talents for the Lord, how much and how far the gospel will go!”
Absurd, I say. First, who made these people and gave them the talents that they have? So why would we say what we say? Didn’t Paul say, “Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?” (1 Corinthians 3:5). By the way, “gave to every man” refers to abilities and talents that we all have. Our society is so caught up in human personality that today this has infiltrated the church to the extent that even in the church, some Christians are consumed with, and call other popular or well-known Christians “superstars”.
Yes, we have gospel “superstars”. Superstar Christian entertainers. Superstar Christian preachers. Superstar Christian sportsmen and women. So now, it is a case of the world in the church instead of the church in the world but not of the world, as Jesus said and prayed just before He was crucified (John 15:19; 17:16-19).
God is not really concerned with the human vessel because Jesus said if we fail to worship Him, the very rocks will cry out His praises. The focus always has to been on Jesus. It is not about affluence. It is not about pedigree. It is not about intellect. It is not about position. It is not about power. No, no, no. God even uses animals like a donkey or a fish to accomplish His objectives. Just ask Balaam. Just ask Jonah.
And, just look at whom Jesus chose for His disciples. Levi, who became the disciple and later, the Apostle Matthew. He was a customs official in Capernaum; and you know how we hate taxes! Well, he was a dishonest taxman who taxed imports and exports based on his own judgment. But Christ chose and used him tremendously. What about Thomas? Isn’t the disciple turned Apostle, Thomas, often referred to as “Doubting Thomas” because he refused to believe that Jesus had risen from the dead until he saw and touched Christ’s physical wounds? But Christ chose and used him too.
And did you look at the Apostle John, brother to James, who were both nicknamed by Jesus the “sons of thunder?” Oh my, did they have a fiery temper! And they were racist too! The Bible says that one day, as they traveled through or in Samaria, Jesus sent some disciples ahead to reserve a place to stay and also get something to eat. However, the Bible reports that the Samaritans (hated by the Jews) were not friendly at all, and would not let the disciples make any arrangements for their Master, Jesus. Do you know what the brothers asked Jesus when they saw the Samaritans’ rude and crude behaviour? They quickly asked Jesus, ”Master, can we call down fire from heaven on these guys and teach them a lesson and destroy this Samaritan village?” Of course you know Jesus will not have none of this!
Lest I forget, did you hear of Simon the Zealot? In today’s terms, Simon will either be called a freedom fighter or a terrorist? Yessir! The zealots were originally a political movement in the 1st century and their goal was to get the Jews to revolt against the Roman government and kick them out of their land through the use of force, and by force, I mean arms. But Jesus called him too.
And they were all people like YOU! Like me! But check out what He did with all of them. Yes, Jesus can transform the rough into smooth. It’s not whether you are a superstar or a Nobel prize winner or the wealthiest or the most powerful or whatever; it is all about Jesus and what He can do to, and with you.
Proposed prayer: Dear Lord, I know that You are God and that You are able to work through the non-intellectual things in this world. Indeed, You use the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. You take us just as we are and you use us in our weak state for Your glory. I yield myself to You today and ask that You use me, to Your glory. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.